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Departmental Working Hours

Volume 487: debated on Monday 2 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the policy of his Department and its agencies is on granting staff time off in lieu for working (a) in lunch breaks, (b) in evenings and (c) at other times outside contracted working hours; and if he will make a statement. (252017)

The majority of staff in the Ministry of Justice are covered by flexible working arrangements which, subject to working appropriate core hours, provide staff with a degree of flexibility while enabling the Ministry and its Agencies to provide an effective service for our customers.

Flexible working arrangements mean that staff who work in excess of their contracted hours, whether during lunch breaks, in evenings or at other times, gain credit on their flexi-hours. Those who accrue sufficient hours credit, may (subject to prior management approval) take the appropriate number of hours as ‘flexi leave'.

This approach allows excess hours to be accrued and taken as leave at such times that both meet the needs of the business and support the work-life balance of our staff.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many days off in lieu were granted to staff in (a) his Department, (b) its agencies and (c) its non-departmental public bodies for working (i) in lunch breaks and (ii) at other times outside contracted working hours, in the last year for which figures are available. (252018)

Time off in-lieu is available under locally agreed Flexible Working Hours arrangements. The number of hours worked and time taken off in lieu are recorded locally by managers can be provided only at a disproportionate cost.